The Exit is Through the Gift Shop

And the bouncers at the other end will hold you upside down by your ankles to shake the last bits of change from your pockets. Do you find it rude when tourist attractions and other services make it clear that they’re not happy until they’ve sucked every last cent out of you?

Paying for parking the other day the machine looked normal enough. Ticket goes here, money goes there then change comes out at the bottom where it says “collect change here”. Easy. Put in the ticket, put in ten bucks to pay the the six dollar fee, get the exit ticket but wait, no change. Read the display. Its reset for the next sucker. Look at the ticket. Oh look, it includes a four dollar credit for our next visit. How thoughtful.

Now the four bucks is irritating but the real distress lies in consideration of the possibility of becoming a grumpy old man. Further evidence of this decline into crankiness is writing angry letters, albeit to a blog. But really, is there a difference?

The grumpy old man thing is not a good look. It says you’re failing to cope. You expect the world to be other than it is. You feel you’re not getting the respect you deserve. It lacks dignity and humility.

A wiser person understands ‘it is what it is’, nods knowingly and doesn’t sweat the small stuff. The only thing that may have been ‘better in your day’ is your perception of yourself.

Of course there are things worse than being a grumpy old man. Like for example a self proclaimed guru with pretensions to wisdom.

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